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Harley backs out of ride for 'Justice or Else' | News

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Harley backs out of ride for 'Justice or Else'

FORT WASHINGTON, Md. (WUSA9) -- A massive controversy is brewing at a local motorcycle dealership ahead of the 20th anniversary of the Million Man March on Washington.

Conservative activists have accused Harley-Davidson of Washington D.C. of backing a group that advocates violence against white people.

Riders supporting the "Justice or Else" commemoration of the Million Man March had planned to meet at the Fort Washington dealership on the morning of October 10. But a controversy over Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan has led the dealership to cut ties with the group.

The conservative activists point to a speech in August where Farrakhan said, "Kill those who are killing us. Stop them and kill them and let them feel the pain of death that we are feeling." In another speech in August, Farrakhan insisted the activists are misinterpreting him. "Making mischief with my words 'Farrakhan want to raise an army to kill white people. Cause you see white people deserve to die.'"

After the dealership agreed to let the Ride for Justice rally at the dealership, motorcycle manufacturer Harley-Davidson was bombarded with messages. Some criticized the dealerships owners: "Please revoke the use of your franchise at the dealership located in Fort Washington, MD"

Harley responded on Facebook: "Harley-Davidson of Washington D.C. has informed us that they will no longer serve as a meeting point for the Ride for Justice. We also want you to know we are not and have never have been a sponsor of this event."

Ironically, the two years ago, the dealership served as a rallying point for many of the same people who are criticizing it now. And the dealership has plenty of defenders.

“Every major event in D.C., this dealership is a rallying point,” Synthia Brown Dyson, a 28 year veteran of the Metropolitan Police Department who rode Harleys for the department, said. 

A spokesman for the dealership says the people here usually just say yes to anyone who comes by and asks if their group can meet up here. He says it was only after they started getting hammered on social media that they realized this one was particularly controversial and pulled out.

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Ride of the Patriots brought bikers from Fairfax to DC